New Insights on the Gospels

March for Life 2012

Evil triumphs when good men do nothing - Edmund Burke

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Sts. Simon and Jude, Apostles - 28th October 2009

A tradition attests that the two Apostles went to evangelize Armenia and Persia, and that they suffered martyrdom in the city of Suanir in the year 47.

St. Simon was also called the Zealot, probably because he had been a member of the nationalist party of Zealots who refused to recognize any foreign yoke over Palestine.

The mother of St. Jude Thaddeus was Mary of Cleophas, a sister-in-law of the Blessed Virgin, who with the Virgin Mary stood by the Cross of Jesus on Calvary. His father was Cleophas [Clopas or Alpheo in Aramaic], a brother of St. Joseph. Therefore, he was the legal cousin of the Man-God. Jude was one of those that his fellow countrymen called a “brother” of the Son of the Carpenter, because it was a custom among the Jews at that time to call cousins brothers. He wrote an epistle to combat the Gnostic heresy, which was just beginning to appear.

In 1605, the relics of the two Apostles were transported to the Vatican Basilica and placed in a crypt under the Altar of the Crucifixion. Tradition tells us this was the site where the cross of St. Peter once stood. St. Semin’s Basilica in Toulouse, France, also has some of their relics.

Comments of Prof. Plinio:

There are several facts worthy of consideration in this selection. The first is the fact that St. Simon was called the Zealot. The Zealots were those who had a especial zeal for the independence of the Palestine, that is, they did not want the Holy Land to fall into the hands of any pagans whatsoever. Since the Zealot cause had some good points – commendable in some aspects – we understand why Our Lord recruited one of His Apostles from its numbers.

St. Jude was the cousin of Our Lord. He was not the only cousin: St. James the Lesser was also His cousin. It seems that St. James the Greater and St. John were also closely related to Jesus Christ. This shows the extraordinary predestination of the race of David. If just one Apostle belonged to this race, that would have been enough to immortalize it. However, to demonstrate His love for the stock of David, not only did God choose to descend from this race, but He chose most of the Apostles from it.

It also shows God’s consideration for legacy. We see the lack of wisdom and absurdity of these egalitarian persons who attack the principle of inheritance in society. This erroneous position can be refuted by thousands of episodes in Scriptures.

St. Jude is the patron saint of desperate causes, the patron of the impossible. Many times in our counter-revolutionary life we feel the disproportion of our means in relation to those of the Revolution that we are called to destroy. To some of us it may appear impossible to win this battle. So, when a temptation of discouragement assaults us, we should have recourse to St. Jude.

In our days we are witnessing the usurpation of Holy Mother Church by Progressivism, which is a doctrine different from Catholic doctrine. We should ask St. Simon to communicate to us the zeal he showed for the Holy Land. With his zeal we should fight any impure doctrine that exists in the Church and expel it from her bosom.

Thus, on this day when we commemorate the martyrdom of these two illustrious Apostles, we should ask St. Jude to restore our courage for the fight against the Revolution. Then, we should ask for St. Simon’s zeal so that this renewed courage will become a blazing torch against the enemies of the Holy Church.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

St. Sabina - 27th October 2009

Saint Sabina Martyr was a noble pagan, wife of Senator Valentino, was converted to Christianity by her maid Serapia. She was accused of being a Christian by Elpidio the Perfect (at the time), after having placed, in the family Sepulcher the holy body of Serapia, (who is also a martyr). Killed because she declared herself inscribed in the new religion, she courageously professed her faith in Christ.

Saint Sabina suffered martyrdom on the 29th of August in the year 125 under Emperor Hadrian. Her relics, together with those of the Saints Serapia, Alexander, Evenzio and Teodulo are venerated under the High Altar of the Roman Basilica which bears her name.

For information about the Church of Santa Sabina please click here

Monday, October 26, 2009

St. Evaristus - 26th October 2009

Son of a Hellenic Bethlehem Jew. He was the sixth Pope of the Catholic Church. Traditionally considered a martyr, but there is no documentation of the event. Papal Ascension: c.99. Died: c.107; buried at Vaticano near Saint Peter.

Saint Evaristus succeeded Saint Anacletus on the throne of Saint Peter, elected during the second general persecution, under the reign of Domitian. That emperor no doubt did not know that the Christian pontificate was being perpetuated in the shadows of the catacombs. The text of the Liber Pontificalis, says of the new pope:

“Evaristus, born in Greece of a Jewish father named Juda, originally from the city of Bethlehem, reigned for thirteen years, six months and two days, under the reigns of Domitian, Nerva and Trajan, from the Consulate of Valens and Veter (96) until that of Gallus and Bradua (108). This pontiff divided among the priests the titles of the city of Rome. By a constitution he established seven deacons who were to assist the bishop and serve as authentic witnesses for him. During the three ordinations which he conducted in the month of December, he promoted six priests, two deacons and five bishops, destined for various churches. Evaristus received the crown of martyrdom. He was buried near the body of Blessed Peter in the Vatican, on the sixth day of the Calends of November (October 25, 108). The episcopal throne remained vacant for nineteen days.”

The Bollandists explain two passages of this text as follows: Saint Anacletus had ordained twenty-five priests for the city of Rome; Saint Evaristus completed this institution by settling the boundaries of each of these titles, and filling the vacancies which probably occurred during the persecution of Diocletian. As for the decree by which he ordains that seven deacons make up the cortege of the bishop, we find in the first epistle of Saint Anacletus a text which helps us to grasp and better perceive the discipline of the early Church. There existed amid the diverse elements which composed it in its first years, proud minds, envious souls, ambitious hearts which could not bear the yoke of obedience, and who by their revolts and incessant detraction fatigued the patience of the Apostles. The deacons were to be the Pope’s guards against their ill-intentioned projects.

It was at the same time as Saint Ignatius, the illustrious bishop of Antioch, that Pope Saint Evaristus gave his life by martyrdom. The acts of his martyrdom are lost, but we perceive that the same faith, heroism and devotion united the churches of the East and of the West. He is often represented with a sword because he was decapitated, or with a crib, because it is believed that he was born in Bethlehem, from which his father migrated.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Marriage needs children

All marriages go through a crisis, writes Msgr Cormac Burke who, as a retired judge in the Roman Rota, has reviewed thousands of cases of marriage annulment from around the world. The following is partly adapted from his book "Covenanted Happiness".

This crisis usually takes place at about two to five years after a couple gets married. Hence, he writes, a couple's biggest and most frequent mistake for their marriage is to postpone having children until two to five years after they are married.

It is at this point of time that the romance and love between a married couple begins to fade. It is, according to Msgr Burke, nature's plan for married couples to have children as the support for their marriage at this point of time. But because many married couples choose to delay having children, the support for their marriage does not exist when they need it.

Many young couples want to enjoy themselves to each other for a number of years after getting married. Despite whatever reasons they give, "to have a good time together" is not much of an ideal for two people to share, and is definitely not going to be enough to hold them together in love for a lifetime.

A couple that plans for a marriage with sacrifice reduced to a minimum and, if possible, totally eliminated, is a couple who wants a marriage where they will eventually lose respect for each other.

One reason that is given that the couple wants to mature first before having children, not realizing that it is in the process of raising children together that they mature. I am sure that you can think of many young men in the army who are hardly mature simply because their parents have protected them and prevented them from undergoing hardship throughout their lives. These parents are not doing their children a favour, they are damaging them, spoil-ing them.

In the same way, a married couple that avoids having children under the pretext of maturity is, in fact, preventing their marriage from maturing. They are damaging their marriage deliberately, they are spoil-ing their marriage and themselves.

People have always cried out, "We want to be able to enjoy marriage without the Church telling us what to do. We don't want to be weighed down by the rules of the Church." It is ironic then that the people who pay least heed to the laws of the Church are the ones who are finding least happiness in marriage. What is more ironic is that they now blame the Church for giving them a guilty conscience which led to their unhappiness in marriage. That is one sign of immaturity in a person - the refusal to take responsibility for one's own mistakes. Immature people are always looking for a scapegoat for their problems.

For love to exist and withstand the trials of life, there must be sacrifice, because sacrifice is part of love. To plan for a marriage with the least amount of sacrifice possible is to plan for a marriage with the least amount of love. It is to plan for a marriage that is most likely to breakdown.